Cindy Vener- Oil and Cold Wax -March 9, 2020

Cindy Vener, local artist, demonstrated several advantages to mixing oils with cold wax medium. The work dries faster, allowing more layers to be applied; scratching through the layers creates textures and reveals the mysteries of underlayers.

Cindy’s favorite reference book is Cold Wax Medium, Techniques, Concepts & Conversations by Rebecca Crowell & Jerry McLaughlin. The helft papercover tome is available at

Enjoy the photo story below that shows Cindy mixing cold wax and oils on palette papers and applying the buttery mix to a firm substrate like encaustic board using brayers, spreaders, and scrapers; mark-making with Marabu oil crayons and Stabilo woodie crayons, and Catalyst wedges and “brushes”; transferring stenciled designs from deli-papers; layering opaque color and scratching through. Marvelous results from artistic play! Some of us will surely try Oil and Cold Wax during Open Studio time. Thank you, Cindy, for a very stimulating presentation!

About Cindy Vener

OneBlood Exhibit February 2020

Thank you Jan Kiszonak for volunteering to organize the exhibits at OneBlood. The paintings shown this month at OneBlood are by artists Terry Avick, Heather Doherty, and Jan Kiszonak.
Artists who are members of OAG are encouraged to exhibit their work at OneBlood. There are No fees to participate and no commissions on sales.

Dana Fox Jenkins “Watercolor Sketchbooks/Journals”- January 13, 2020

Dana Fox Jenkins

Dana Jenkins demonstration focused on her travel journals that are brilliantly colored and evocative. A few sample pages from her journals are shown below.

To complement her friend Dana’s demo, OAG member and Program coordinator Milly Sheffer showed how to make our own journals from scratch using bits of fabrics, cardboard, and leftover watercolor paper. The accordian style memory books that capture scenes from our travels captivated the audience. A fun couple of hours!

Thank you Dana and Milly, for this wonderfully inspiring presentation!

OneBlood Exhibit – Nov 6, 2019 – Jan 8, 2020

Article and Photos by Debbie Orrison Janssen, OneBlood Exhibit Chairperson

The November OAG art display at OneBlood had seven lovely art pieces submitted by four artists. The theme was “Sugarplum Purple”. The staff and patients continue to express their appreciation of the beautiful art that the Ocala Art Group shares during each show. This show will be on display until January. These artists have shared art during this show – see photos:

Joyce Cusick:  Banana Flower and Albino Pelicans
Heather Doherty:  Springtime and Wine on the Vine
Barbara Fife:  Happiness
Debbie Orrison Janssen:  Fine Wine and Wine Grapes

Vicki Pritchard – Elements & Principles of Design – November 11, 2019

By consciously using the elements and principles of design during the creative process, or while judging a show, or while critiquing a finished piece, whether your own or someone else’s, a visible, objective standard can be upheld. Not only do we grow as artists by creating more powerful works, but also, when given the responsibility of judging an art show, we are able to critique all kinds of art in an unbiased manner. One can then offer a useful explanation as to why each piece was judged accordingly.

Vicki Pritchard presented an excellent overview of the Elements and Principles of Design in art in the context of how a judge evaluates works. Vicki proceeded to show how repetition and variation of the dominant triangular shapes in two compositions contribute to harmony, grace and beauty of the art.

Vicki then invited the group to help critique and analyze several works brought to the meeting by members. 

Much valuable guidance was provided and her insights were greatly appreciated.
Thank you, Vicki!

Vicki Pritchard

Ruth Ann Dexheimer – Impressionism October 14, 2019

Ruth Ann Dexheimer, docent at the Appleton Museum of Art led on a virtual tour of Impressionist works.

Ruth Ann Dexheimer used her prodigious collection of art posters of Master works to illustrate styles and trends around the time of the Impressionist period. Ruth Ann remarked that Arthur Appleton never purchased a Impressionist painting for his collection, but invested in several works by Bourguereau and the painters of his Salon. The style required the used of small brushes to achieve smooth textures, particularly skin tones. Although the Bourguereau paintings look realistic, they show idealized laborers with perfect features. Some local artists may have had the opportunity to learn this style from Jack Jackson, who taught at the Red Swan in Ocala.

The Industrial Revolution inspired artists like Barbizon and Turner to preserve on canvas the landscapes that were disappearing. Trade with Japan influenced artists in Europe when orders from Japan arrived wrapped in wood block prints.

Painters in the late 1800’s left the Salons to paint outdoors where light and color changed rapidly throughout the day. Painters depicted a scene, but also the feelings it evoked. Monet painted the same scenes in different light, using lines of paint to capture effects. The exhibit will feature some work by Monet.

Edgar Degas and Mary Cassatt are featured in the special Impressionism Exhibit at the Appleton Nov 2 – Jan 5. Considered radical in their time, Degas’ paintings at the horse races and the ballet studio reflected a new trend in composition, mimicking photos that cut off parts of the scene. Mary Cassatt endearingly captured scenes from everyday life.

Renoir learned from salon painters like Bouguereau and from the Impressionists. He often included both styles in a single painting: salon-like detail for closeups and soft impressions of distant figures.

Titled “Across the Atlantic: American Impressionism Through the French Lens”, the exhibit will also feature American and Canadian Impressionists. Impressionism includes a broad range of artists and styles of painting; and the scope of one artist’s work often shows that the artist tried different styles. Ruth Ann urges us spend time in the galleries studying the works, and then explore some of these styles in our own paintings. Our own work will improve, inspired by the Masters.

Thank you, Ruth Ann, for this informative presentation that has surely deepened our appreciation of the special exhibit on loan to the Appleton Museum from the Reading Public Museum November 2, 2019 – Janurary 5, 2020.

Ruth Ann Dexheimer lecture about the Impressionism exhibit coming to the Appleton Museum.

Sharon Harris – Analog Drawing September 9, 2019

Sharon Harris presenting a hands-on session on Analog Drawing

Many artists carry their sketchbooks from place to place capturing little moments and recording visual glimpses of their activities.  Sometimes they can be found making non-recognizable little marks and “doodles.”  That’s me, I like to doodle, but years ago I was shown how to channel them from just being an ill-defined squiggle of lines into a visual tool to expose my subconscious feelings.  These are analog drawings where a dot, line, mark or value is used to represent (compare to or analogous to) a feeling or situation.   These sketches differ from the “doodle” in that they begin by being prompted by a feeling rather than the lines being picked through to find some meaning. 

So, as I have taught many of my drawing students, learning to channel your feelings into your personal visual language of dots, marks, lines and values can help you to discover your subconscious feelings and thoughts.  You can take this understanding and be more sensitive to how to use your visual language on a final artwork.  The analog drawing is non-objective, it is not representational, nor are you striving toward a final product.   It is just a fun tool to use to help you map your feelings in a visual form. “

Sharon Harris

Have you ever looked at a painting that depicted a serene setting, yet you felt tension and unease? In this hands-on program Sharon presented a valuable technique to develop the appropriate underpinnings of our paintings, a way to ensure that a painting conveys the desired mood and emotion.

Analog drawing draws from the right side of the brain, putting aside the analytical and allowing our feelings to guide the drawing tool, harnessing the power of line to capture the unseen qualities of the subject in an abstract drawing.  Line is the basic element of a sketch, but simple lines can be straight, curved, jagged; continuous, broken; vertical, horizontal, diagonal; thin, thick; light, dark. Placed within a simple 4” x 5” rectangle, these lines become a visual language.

Analog Drawing

Sharon encouraged us to keep a sketchbook and draw every day. However, instead of trying to sketch an accurate representation of what we see, it is easier to write notes, simple words or phrases about the subject, describing its qualities, and how the place, object or person makes us feel. Next, draw a roughly 4” x 5” rectangle and begin to draw lines to depict those qualities and feelings.

How does “sad” look? , “joyful”, “patience”? “anger”? “rigid”? “tranquil”, “powerful”?

That two-minute sketch suggests an underlying structure for the work you may develop later. The simple sketch will probably not be obvious in the finished work, but, paying attention to the analog drawing will help set the underlying framework for the desired mood and emotion that you want to share about this subject.

The sketchbook is an artist’s journal. Look back through your sketches and analog drawings for inspiration. You might decide to elaborate on one “doodle” just as an abstract work.

Analog Drawing

More thoughts… Portrait orientation of the frame creates more power and tension while the landscape orientation is peaceful, restful.

Consider too… Placement of the subject on the left, facing right, looks to the future, full of hope and promise. Placed on the right facing left, the subject looks to the past, perhaps celebrating achievements.

Thank you, Sharon, for sharing this valuable tool of Analog Drawing that will help us capture feelings in visual language of our art work, and for giving us a new perspective on keeping a sketchbook.

OneBlood Exhibit – Sept 4- Nov 6, 2019

Article and Photos by Debbie Orrison Janssen, OneBlood Exhibit Chairperson

The September OAG art display at OneBlood had thirteen lovely art pieces submitted by six artists. The theme was “Slice of Orange“. The staff and patients continue to express their appreciation of the beautiful art that the Ocala Art Group shares during each show. This show will be on display until November 6th. These artists have shared art during this show – see photos:
Joyce Cusick – Withlacoochee Autumn, Palms on the River
Barbara Fife – Bird of Paradise
Heather Doherty – Six Tangerines, Now Drop the Color, Rainbow of Light 
Debbie Orrison Janssen – Asiatic Lilies, Pomegranates
June Holly Reichenbach – Sunset Paddle, Brittany
Sue Primeau – Lone Journey, The Hideaway, The Gift